Maspeth High School Has a New and Improved Bathroom Policy

There are many things that make a high school unique: memorable senior pranks, freshman initiations, sports and homecoming traditions; but how about swiping school I.D. cards in order to use the bathroom?

To kick off the 2019-2020 school year, Maspeth High School has implemented a new system that now requires students to scan their school I.D. cards before they enter the bathrooms. Though Maspeth High School has always been a “scanning school”, especially upon entering the building in order to track the attendance of students, it came as quite a surprise to students when they found out they would now have to scan their I.D. cards before they enter the restrooms.

Mr. Spiro, the school’s counselor, has stated that this new bathroom policy was established in order to “keep track of students and ensure their safety.” In addition to this, Mr. Spiro also revealed that the school has taken the necessary steps to “protect students from any problems that they may face in the bathroom, as well as prevent any issues before they escalate.''

According to the National Center For Educational Statistics, in 2016, about 9% of all children who were surveyed revealed that they experienced bullying in their school’s bathroom. Thus, despite the fact that Maspeth High School has a 97 percent rate for safety, the school has taken precautionary measures to ensure that their students do not experience the same issues that are present in other schools--this is evident due to the fact that all students are now tracked during their bathroom usage.

Maspeth High School isn’t the only school who has implemented some form of a policy to keep track of its students regarding bathroom usage. In fact, earlier this year, a survey of 362 school nurses--ranging from pre-K, elementary, middle, and high schools--revealed how their schools are taking precautionary steps for the safety of students. The cold hard facts showed that less than 8 percent of nurses reported that their schools had a written policy on bathroom usage. In addition, 64 percent had no policy, while 28 percent of the nurses were unaware if their school had any policy at all. Half of the students at these schools did, however, have the ability to go to the bathroom whenever they wanted, while others offered supervised bathroom breaks. Though less than 8 percent of school nurses reported about their school’s bathroom policy, the number of schools to establish some form of a policy seems to be growing and Maspeth High School has been added to this list.

As for the students in the building, when asked about Maspeth’s new policy, all of those who were questioned seemed to be unbothered by it, despite the fact that it came as quite a surprise upon hearing about the new policy. Frankly, one student demonstrated that “it doesn’t affect her at all” and that she simply “doesn’t mind it.”

Although this new policy is still relatively new to Maspeth, however, Mr. Spiro has claimed that the utilization of scanning I.D. cards for the restrooms has “so far been good” and although it’s “hard to predict” whether this new policy is temporary or permanent, “it must be evaluated for effectiveness” in order to determine such information regarding the safety of students. Seemingly enough, however, Maspeth High School has prioritized the safety of its students by implementing this new bathroom system.